A number of officials will be visiting the National Ploughing Championships in Fenagh today.
There today is the Minister for Agriculture, who’s been telling KCLR that he can see a resolution to the beef crisis. Our Sinéad Burke door-stopped Michael Creed & put it to him that the beef crisis is a massive issue. This was his response:
”I’d like to acknowledge the role that all the farming organisations in bringing about an agreed template to resolve it. They’ve been really pro-active – each & every one of them, all seven organisations. There’s great credit due. So hopefully we can see real substantial progress made in the next couple of days”
However, Fianna Fáil leader Michael Martin’s tells KCLR Live that Minister Creed should have intervened sooner:
”The government & the beef industry moved too late, responded to late to the issues. The resentment has been burning for quite some time. You can throw in the Brexit issue in terms of exchange prices – the dropping of sterling. It’s very clear to us there has been issues that the Minister should have intervened earlier.”
Meanwhile IFA president Joe Healy says it’s time to move on:
”It’s time for farmers who have made huge sacrifices, those on the protest line & those farmers who have supported them by not selling their cattle, we move on. We try and make the deal work in the outcome of the discussions last weekend. And the blockades are stood down & farmers are allowed sell their cattle because definitely 8 if not 9 out of every 10 farmers we’ve met over the last two & a half days say let’s move on.”
KCLR understands that some of those involved are disputing the outcome of a ballot taken at a meeting last night. One local beef farmer says it isn’t resolved yet:
There’s four representatives going up, they’ll be representing other factories up the country to gain clarification on parts on this document. They would have good experience in this area & as soon as they gain that & come back to us we’ll have further clarification on the issue & we might be able to resolve it then.